I’ve given you an extra serving of tissues with your coffee.

9BB38BA8-C91E-4978-B03F-762EDA799358-6471-000006471DE03962In writing a style and arts blog, I consider I’ve dodged the awkward ball of having to write a critical review. If somewhere isn’t stylish, I can easily choose not to write about it and when reviewing creative subjects, there is nearly always something positive to pull out of the experience. I’m grateful this is not a foodie blog because I don’t know enough about the subject to be interesting. However, I am very aware that style/ decor/ ambience is something that is very important to most people, particularly when considering repeat visits. Style is also about how things are served.

Before I go any further, I will say the food at this establishment was lovely.

While on the rural eastern edge of Plymouth, we went to a Farm Shop that is well-considered locally but appears to have recently changed its name; it charges premium prices. We ordered lunch and coffee, to be accurate a flat white. Our drinks were slow to arrive and the flat white arrived not with the usual almond biscotti, but with an extra serving of tissues. The waitress explained that she had slopped so much of the coffee in the saucer that we would need extra tissues!

She hadn’t actually slopped a flat white, because that was not what was being served. She’d slopped, at best a latte, and at worst the sort of white coffee elderly relatives give you.

Premium prices should go hand in hand with quality, expertise, pride and a good knowledge of your subject. Without that, customers are unlikely to return. Nationally, the bar is set pretty high for these types of establishment. Daylesford comes to mind and somewhat unexpectedly the motorway services at Gloucester. Perhaps I’m being picky but I don’t see a side serving of extra tissues as a reason to come back.

Thankfully that was the worst experience of the day. Onto more positive things soon…

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